Monday, July 7, 2014

If We Go to #nErDcampMI

If we go to nErDcampMI, we're going to have to leave early.  When we have to leave early, the alarms will ring around 3 am to be on the road by 4:15 a.m.  When we leave at 4:15 a.m., we expect to arrive at your destination on time.  (Spoiler alert: We were mistaken.)  We will travel across the state of Iowa and stop at the World's Largest Truck Stop to obtain nourishment for the driver and feel good about the great time we're making.

When we've got some coffee flowing through the driver's veins, we will develop a plan that allows us to avoid all toll roads around Chicago (we're boss like that) and shorten our trip.  When we have a fantastic plan, we will be excited to realize that we will arrive at nErDcampMI in five and a half hours and head towards Peoria, Illinois.

When we make it to Peoria, the excitement will continue to grow as we get closer and closer to Michigan.  Only to be crushed.  When we travel through Illinois and Indiana and Michigan, we will hit an unthinkable number of travel obstacles -- seemingly endless stretches of mostly construction-free construction zones with 45 mph speed limits complete with photo enforcement, alternative routes through previously unknown towns such as Mazon, Illinois.  Holy Via Galactica!  (There's another little #nerdybookclub reference for you.)


When we encounter travel obstacles, we will add two hours to our travel time, dooming our chance to hear from teaching rock stars.  When we arrive two hours late, we will dart into the auditorium of Western High School and grab a chair in the back to hear Donalyn Miller's keynote.  When we hear her keynote, we will ponder.

  • Do our students have a book when the time appears?  (Like we do!)  It's about access, not time.
  • How do we curate our classroom library?
  • How do we effectively guide serial abandoners?
  • How can we use preview stacks to maintain choice for our children at home and in the classroom?
  • Who are the authors we need to introduce our children to?
  • After years of focusing on reading levels with teachers and parents, how do we shift the conversation?
  • Who are the reading epicenters in our lives?  Whose in our reading community?
  • Should we take a shelfie?

As we are pondering, we will realize that we've missed calls and texts from hotels.com.  When we realize that we've missed them, we will speak with a representative from hotels.com and discover our room is overbooked.  When our room is overbooked, we will get a little feisty with the representative until we are finally able to locate a room at another establishment.  As we are busy being feisty, the NerdRun will begin.  When the NerdRun begins, we enjoy an awesome run/walk along a beautiful course, complete with some "off-road running."  When we enjoy an awesome run, we will cross the finish line (complete with amazing, cheering fans like Colby & Alaina Sharp) and decide we should get an award and tweet about it, not realizing that actual awards are being given.  Whoops!

After our award, we'll again obtain nourishment.  We will discover a fantastic local pizza place.  After gobbling down our pizza, we'll collapse into our beds and write a blog post, filled with anticipation about the learning ahead in Day 2 of nErDcampMI.  And, if we want to go to Day 2 of nErDcampMI, we're going to need to leave early.  But not 4 a.m. early.

Annie

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